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Today on Context Florida: Mike Huckabee, anonymity, Billy Carter and good writing

in Apolitical/Top Headlines by

Today on Context Florida:

Martin Dyckman writes of a Republican running for president who promises unequivocally to “protect Social Security and Medicare … to kill anything that poses a threat to the promises we have made to America’s seniors.” But he’s also calling for a “tax reform” that would bleed seniors as they’ve never been bled before. What do you call such a politician? Huckster, for one. Mike Huckabee, to be specific.

Anonymity and pseudonymity have been key threads in the fabric of American life since the Colonial era, says R.J. Lehmann. From arts to politics, there is a long tradition, respected in practice and protected by the First Amendment, of publishing or distributing material while concealing all or part of one’s identity. But a bill now sitting on Gov. Scott’s desk, S.B. 604, could imperil such privacy for many online. The so-called “True Origin of Digital Goods Act” would require the owners of any website that hosts music or video files to publish their true names, addresses, telephone numbers and emails.

Jeb Bush’s many missteps last week on Iraq got Jac Wilder VerSteeg thinking about Billy Carter. In an astonishing failure of his handlers to prepare him for obvious questions, Jeb bungled multiple opportunities to distance himself from George W.’s Iraq policy. First Jeb said that even knowing what we know now, he would have invaded Iraq in 2003. It took him several days to work himself around to an answer 180 degrees away from that one. The voting public got there long before Jeb did.

Consider all the poorly written emails from colleagues or acquaintances. Vu Tran says her impression of these people certainly changed because a poorly written email, paper or article shows that the writers were negligent or didn’t know any better. With the educational shift of resources and attention to STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields and careers, emphasis still should be placed on improving writing in students across all disciplines. Without the necessary writing skills, people cannot effectively share their research and ideas.

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Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.

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